Old Republic just pre-launched and already they’re announcing What’s Next.

13 12 2011

And it’s looking good, I might add. Below are the changes with the “marketing fluff” stripped out; if you want the full version, here’s the jump. My comments follow the summary:

  • New content including operations, flashpoints, and solo content;
  • Guild functionality including guild banks and guild capital ships;
  • UI customization;
  • PvP content;
  • More space combat including a special project (no details on that yet);
  • the Legacy System with surname, powers, objects, and “other cool benefits”;

Let me first say I’m a little surprised to see no mention of advanced class/spec switching or the like. “Disappointed” isn’t the word for it…I’m actually not disappointed. The more I think about it, the more I think I’d like a game where your class was so intimately tied to the story you’d wrought building it that 1. it makes no sense for you to be able to switch and 2. Bioware will agree.

I did a better job keeping myself out of the loop than I thought I did; “guild capital ships“? That sounds awesome to me and I’d really like to see it happen. Banks are par for the course here; that they weren’t included at launch means only they were lower on the priority scale than a lot of other stuff. That said, I bet banks will be in one of the first patches we see that’s not only hot-fixes.

UI Customization is definitely en vogue with MMOs these days; people like to reshape their UI and there are groups (like Curse) who go to great efforts to help players do that. That said, Rift’s in-game UI editor was sufficient…you know, if you’re like me and you like to minimize the amount of headache you experience on patch day. If they give us at least that level of functionality, I’ll be rather low on the complaints scale. (Then again, I actually like the neon-blue-liney Star Wars UI thing they’ve got going on anyway.)

PVP is not something I’m looking forward to, per se, but there are definitely people for whom that’s a big deal, so cheers to them with this “It’s a’comin!” announcement. I’ll give it a try, for sure, but the first few weeks of Warhammer Online and Mythic’s undelivered promises have forever set the bar on PvP. It’s unfair, mind you, as those expectations were and still are too high to meet. (Sorry, Bioware, but that’s an uphill battle for you in my eyes.)

The rail-shooter looks like a quaint mini-game and looked fun to me at the demos at PAX. I’m sure you’re thinking what I’m thinking: what the heck is this “special project”? Ship mods? Free-roaming? PvP? I know, I’m wishlisting, I’m sorry; after years of enjoying X-wing as a child, I couldn’t resist.

I wonder if the surname/legacy abilities will purely be “social powers” or if they’ll have any effects on combat performance: either in-combat, like stat buffs, or out-of-combat, like recovery? Special modes of travel? Special companions? Perhaps crafting bonuses of some kind?

Like everybody, I’d like more details, but this has obviously done the trick: my interest in future additions to TOR is peaked. I’m already wish-listing additions to the game and I haven’t even laid hands on my box copy yet.

If you pre-ordered, I hope you got into head-start today. 😉 Enjoy!

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